June 1, 2015
California-based carrier Virgin America Inc. provides air travel services in the continental United States and Mexico. The company operates from its focus cities of Los Angeles and San Francisco to other business and leisure destinations in North America. British billionaire Richard Branson’s Virgin group owns a 25% stake in the airline. US law regulates that Americans must own most of the domestic airlines.
The airline wants to make the customer experience of travelling hurdle-free by taking various initiatives towards this goal. They are using Amazon.com’s 1-Click service as a model to follow and are adopting digital payment technologies and analytics. Eventually, the airline wants to offer one-click shopping so that customers who take the same flight regularly can book with just one click on the website or via a mobile device.
Visa Checkout—which Virgin America launched in February—is one step forward in building a back-end infrastructure to support such retail transactions. Virgin America is the first US airline to launch Visa Checkout, building on its innovative new virginamerica.com website with a simple and speedy new way to process online payments. Virgin America lets customers use it to pay for tickets, baggage and upgrades at its website. Visa Checkout is designed to make online shopping as easy as swiping a physical card. After signing up once, Visa Checkout removes the need to enter card details during the online checkout process wherever consumers see the Visa Checkout button. As the first and only US airline to offer a fully responsive website, Visa Checkout is available when booking Virgin America flights across all devices.
Though the company has not done anything with regard to analytics till now, it will remain a matter of focus in the future. The company considers the data derived from analytics a very important factor for attracting new customers and retaining old ones.